My Mother is in Assisted Living and fights every day with the Nurses about taking her pills, because she has trouble swallowing them. Does anyone have a suggestion that will make it easier for her?

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Does any one have a suggestion that will make it easier for her to swallow pills? (they tried crushing them,and putting in applesauce, but she doesn't like taste)

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Good to hear from you, Drugman. Too often people forget that their elders' pharmacist may be the best person to ask when it comes to drug combinations and side effects, as well as how to administer them. This is what they do.

Carol
Depending upon the type of medication your mom takes, there may be alternative dosing forms available that will eliminate the oral route. Specialty pharmacies are also available to reconstitute your mom's meds into a more pallitable form. This last suggestion may involve additional costs however. A couple questions: what are the names of the meds? How many different meds are there? Are they from the same doctor? Lastly, let a Consultant Pharmacist review your mother's medications to determine the efficiency of collective use. The goal is to consolidate all meds into the least possible amount with maximum efficacy. Some of the drugs can be changed and/or eliminated. Let a pharmacists look over your mom's total drug regimen.
There are some thickened liquids that have no taste or can be mixed with orange concentrate that will make it easier for her to swallow? Usually can find them in the Home Health or drug stores. I have tasted and they are good either with or without flavors. These may help to get the pills down easier
my mother has the same problem. she prefers taking hers with tapioca pudding. you cant taste it as much in pudding. i make sure there is pudding on the top and bottom of the pill. the more pudding she can swallow at once, the better it works. also she says the tapioca makes you not feel the pills as much as they go down.
Yes, I TOO, have difficulty swallowing pills. I'm not in a facility, but I learned from others. Here's what to do: Walk down to the desk and ask for the head nurse, manager-in-charge or physician, whoever is available. Tell them that the pills MUST be cut up into quarters or halves. They won't want to do this of course, but you must insist. Be nice about it. Insist. Then offer to administer the pills yourself to your patient. When she has consumed the pills, chart it and report it to the nurse on duty. Tell the patient that she will be fine. She must make an effort to swallow the chopped up pills.
Norene
My father in law was hiding the pills under his tongue, then spitting them out after the medication nurse left. On visits, we even found pills in the facility's potted plants. He thought they were poisoning him, and the doctors who prescribed them just out for the money, so he fought taking them.

My own father used to be a Pharmacist. He sometimes has trouble at pill time, and sometimes refuses his medications, and sometimes fights with the staff, as well. They learn what works. A re-approach will often do the trick. They come back, and try again, and he takes them on the 2nd attempt. Some things can't be crushed, and some things only come in one form, but some can be given in juice, and some by IM.
I know when my mom was in the nursing home because of a liquid restriction they had to grind up her pills and mixed them in applesauce until she could drink more liquids. It worked.
Thank you all for your wonderful suggestions. I didn't realize there were so many people with the same problem. I happened to speak to a friend of mine who is a speech therapist and she recommended a product called Spray'n Swallow (she is using it with her patients who have trouble swallowing). She said you just spray it on the pills and it makes the pills very slippery so they just them slide down the throat. Found it online. Bringing it to my Mother today (I hope she doesn't give me a hard time trying something new). Will let everyone know if it helps.
Just got back from visiting my Mother. She has tried using the Spray'n Swallow product I bought for her to help her swallow pills and I'm happy to say it really helped!. She didn't want to use it (no surprise there), but after the Nurses talked to her for a while she gave it a try and we were all pleasantly surprised. They just sprayed it on her pills and then she swallowed the pills with water...they went down real easy. She also said she liked the taste (it has a very light minty taste) and it helped eliminate the bitter pill aftertaste of some of her pills. Can't tell you how happy I am to have been able to help her with this problem (plus I don't have to get all those phone calls from the Nurses any more). Thanks again for all your suggestions.

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